Cost‐Effectiveness of Comprehensive Medication Reviews Versus Noncomprehensive Medication Review Interventions and Subsequent Successful Medication Changes in a Medicare Part D Population

Research Publications | 2 Minute Read

Chinthammit C, Armstrong E, Boesen K, Martin R, Taylor A, Warholak T.

Published: 5/1/2015


Background: An estimated 1.5 million preventable medication-related adverse events occur annually, with some resulting in serious injury and even death. To help address this issue, the Centers for Medicare Medicaid Services (CMS) now require medication therapy management (MTM) programs to offer comprehensive medication reviews (CMRs) to all Medicare Part D beneficiaries at least once a year. During a CMR, patients receive an extensive amount of medication and educational information. In contrast, noncomprehensive medication reviews (non-CMRs) are more targeted and focus on resolving a particular medication-related problem (MRP) via short patient consultations, patient letters, and direct provider interventions.

Objective: To conduct a cost-effectiveness analysis comparing CMRs with non-CMR interventions on successful medication regimen changes and reductions in adverse drug events (ADEs).

Methods: This decision analytic model compared the cost-effectiveness of CMRs with other intervention methods (non-CMRs) from a payer’s perspective. For this model, a successful outcome was defined as a beneficiary case devoid of an ADE due to MRPs. The model was extensively tested and subjected to a thorough one-way sensitivity analysis and a second-order probabilistic sensitivity analysis with 10,000 iterations from the variable distributions.

Results: Non-CMR interventions were less costly and more effective than CMRs. The point estimate for direct medical costs was $193 for CMRs and $157 for non-CMRs, and the estimated probability of avoiding an ADE was 0.93 and 0.94 for CMRs and non-CMRs, respectively. The 10,000 iteration-Monte Carlo simulation scatterplot and cost-effectiveness acceptability curve (CEAC) revealed a dominance by non-CMRs in preventing harmful ADEs from cost and effectiveness perspectives; however, there was an overlap in the 95% CIs for both cost and ADEs prevented. Despite this, a non-CMR intervention saved estimated $5,377.08 per ADE prevented. One-way sensitivity analysis indicated the results were sensitive to the cost of treating a preventable ADE. In 100% of cases, the CEAC demonstrated that non-CMRs were likely the most cost-effective intervention regardless of the health plan’s willingness to pay.

Conclusions: The cost-effectiveness acceptability curve suggests that non-CMR interventions were less costly and more effective than CMRs; however, there was overlap in the 95% CIs for costs and ADEs prevented. In all cases, the CEAC demonstrated that non-CMRs were the most economical intervention with regard to time and cost. Non-CMRs show promise as a viable method to address MRPs, reduce ADEs, and improve patient-related health outcomes.

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